German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)



Natura 2000 in the biogeographical regions in Germany

The brochure of Natura 2000 in the biogeographical regions in Germany which was out of stock has been actualized and can be ordered under Publications.

2007 National Report

Germany’s National Report was submitted to the EU Commission on 7 December 2007. This is the first comprehensive report on the conservation status of habitat types and species under the Habitats Directive throughout Germany.

Further information: National Report

Community Lists

The EU Commission adopted first updated lists of sites of Community importance for the Atlantic, Continental and Alpin regions on 12 and 13 November 2007 respectively 25 January 2008. The updated lists include all sites proposed for the two regions by Germany except the ‘Unterems und Außenems’ (‘Lower Ems and Outer Ems’) site, for which a national court decision is pending.

Further information: Natura 2000 sites

Amendments to the Habitats and Birds Directives Following EU Enlargement

The enlargement of the European Union with the accession of Bulgaria and Romania in November 2006 resulted in a directive adapting the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive. The new directive increases the number of biogeographicalal regions from seven to nine (with the additional of Black Sea and Steppic regions) and modifies Annexes I, II, IV and V of the Habitats Directive and Annex I of the Birds Directive. The full text of the directives including all articles is available as before in 92/43/EEC and 79/409/EEC.

EU Habitats Directive: Reporting Infringement

On 13 October 2006, the European Commission decided to close an infringement case brought against Germany for failure to fully comply with the reporting provisions of the Habitats Directive.

The case had been brought because Germany had failed to report a sufficient number of Natura 2000 network sites. The German government then proposed additional sites at the start of 2006 and these were sufficient to allow the case to be dropped.

Recent publications

An updated version about Natura 2000 in Germany (DVD) has recently been published in english. This DVD informs about the situation of the European network of protected areas Natura 2000 in Germany, including future steps of implementation. It gives an overview on German sites according to both EU-nature directives, the Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC) and the Birds Directive (79/409/EEC). Apart from numerous statistical data, all SCI’s and SPA’s are accessible in an interactive map project at the scale of the topographic map system 1:200,000.
Short fact sheets are given for all species of Annex II and all habitats of Annex I actually occurring in Germany. Many photos of species and habitats illustrate the fact sheets. Statistical information is in many cases presented in diagrams, tables or maps, as for distribution or range.
The DVD presents an overview and the German contribution to the European Natura 2000 network and its implementation of the EU nature Directives.

The volume "Natura 2000 und Klimaänderungen" (Natura 2000 and Climate Change, proceedings, in German) of the BfN shows the current state of research to climate change, its consequences for biological diversity and protected areas.
By concentration the knowledge of research all stakeholders in nature conservation shall get better background information to balance the options for action which result from the existing and expected consequences of climate change for the Natura 2000 sites.

The third volume of the BfN species guide, "Das europäische Schutzgebietssystem Natura 2000. Ökologie und Verbreitung von Arten der FFH-Richtlinie in Deutschland" (The EU Natura 2000 Network - Ecology and Dispersal of Species Protected under the Habitats Directive in Germany, Volume 3: Species of EU Enlargement) looks at the species and to the extent they are native to Germany, added to Annexes II, IV and V of the Habitats Directive following EU enlargement. The various species are presented using profiles, pictures and distribution maps.

EU Enlargement

With Romania and Bulgaria joining the EU on 1 January 2007 und the ten new member states joining on 1 May 2004, the Natura 2000 network gained yet more valuable habitats and species. The current annexes to the Habitats Directive and Birds Directive were published in December 2006 as Directive 2006/105/EC. Accession to the European Union places the new member states to designate and nominate sites for the Natura 2000 network.

In respect of the Habitats Directive, the following requirements applied to the new member states:

  • Transpose the Directive into national law and propose sites for inclusion in the network
  • Apply special area of conservation (SAC) status and conduct an impact assessment as laid down in Article 6 of the Directive
  • Within three years, select sites at biogeographic region level and draft a list of sites of Community importance
  • Within nine years, designate Natura 2000 sites.

In the course of EU enlargement, the annexes to the Habitats Directive were revised and supplemented to include additional species and habitat types.

Habitat Types

  • Annex I was supplemented with 13 new habitat types (including 5 priority habitats) on accession of Bulgaria and Romania in 2006, following 20 new habitat types (including 6 priority habitats) on the previous enlargement in 2004.
  • Four of the new habitat types from the 2004 enlargement are found in Germany, for example Sarmatic steppe pine forest (EU code 91U0). The Annex I habitat types added on accession of Romania and Bulgaria are not found in Germany.


  • Annex II was expanded to include seven new animal species and subspecies and 15 new plant species and subspecies (including 1 priority species) on accession of Bulgaria and Romania and 165 new species (including 58 priority species) on the 2004 enlargement; Annex II now contains nearly 900 species in total
  • Annex IV gained seven new animal species and subspecies and 15 new plant species and subspecies (including one priority species) on accession of Bulgaria and Romania and 158 new species on the 2004 enlargement
  • Annex V saw no change as a result of Romania and Bulgaria joining the EU but was appended with five new species (including three already contained in Annex II and/or IV) following the 2004 enlargement
  • Sixteen of the species added in 2004 are found in or native to Germany, one example being the violet copper butterfly (Lycaena helle). The species added to the annexes following the accession of Romania and Bulgaria do not occur in Germany.
  • Helicigonia lapicida, a land snail added erroneously to Annex II and Annex IV in 2004 has now been delisted.

New species added to the Habitats Directive and changes to the list of species in Annex II (PDF, in German) (as at 2006)

Volume 3 of BfN’s manuals of Habitats Directive: Species of EU Enlargement (in German) gives full information -profiles, pictures and distribution maps- on species native to Germany that were added to the Habitats Directive annexes on the EU’s eastward enlargement.

Further information on changes to the Habitats Directive and the Birds Directive, and on EU enlargement in 2004 and 2007 is available on the EU Commission website: Enlargement 2004, 2007.

Recently published:

Natura 2000 in Germany (DVD)
Recent publications
Cover of publication

Last Change: 01/03/2021